I think the Homasote is worth it.  I'm cutting it out so it is just under track, but my track density isn't what yours is.  With your layout plan, you might as well just cover the whole top with it.  It also depends on how you plan to scenic the layout.  Sometimes it is best to cover the whole top depending on your scenery approach.

Excellent lighting Lance. I used Homasote all around, and it is worth it. And it's fairly inexpensive. The layout and room are really looking great.

Andy

 

 If the barn door type hinge for the bridge proves too wobbly, don't "give up". Just go to a common "piano hinge" (cut to length was a hack saw, etc)  The width usually hold things straighter through its entire travel with zero play. Available "everywhere" from Ace to Menard's.

I've used them on large 6'x4' 1/2" & 3/4" wood cabinet doors used daily, leaned on, hung on, and otherwise abused.  They are much stronger than they look, and hold the edges very well too, despite the tiny screws (drill extra screw holes and/or use longer screws if you really want to; but it's likely overkíll )

@Adriatic posted:

 If the barn door type hinge for the bridge proves too wobbly, don't "give up". Just go to a common "piano hinge" (cut to length was a hack saw, etc)  The width usually hold things straighter through its entire travel with zero play. Available "everywhere" from Ace to Menard's.

I've used them on large 6'x4' 1/2" & 3/4" wood cabinet doors used daily, leaned on, hung on, and otherwise abused.  They are much stronger than they look, and hold the edges very well too, despite the tiny screws (drill extra screw holes and/or use longer screws if you really want to; but it's likely overkíll )

I was going to do that, but I read somewhere you want the hinge point higher than the track so it doesn’t bind? It’s not too bad after I get it down in the groove when laying flat but it does still pivot just slightly. I thought I had the current one high enough but with 2 pieces of test track it still binds slightly. 

Mark and Dave thanks! 

Last edited by Lancer
@Lancer posted:

72B14449-74E7-4920-845E-3B89246482EF6FEF89BD-52AF-473A-8A9A-E090BC2ABC5B
Test fitting the lift bridge today. Hoping to start getting some track laid here soon. 

Hard to tell for sure from the pictures, but it looks like the hinge will bind after track has been laid on the table.  As mentioned in an earlier post, you do need to design something so that the hinge pivot point is above the rails.  Alternative is to build it as a lift-out. 

I’ll be facing the same issue, but my two tracks are 6 inches apart in elevation.  I was planning two bridges, whether pivoting up like yours or lift out.  That’s down the road for me 

Lance, if you ever figure out how to get the track clearance at the hinge end please post some photos. On my three movable bridges, I have found I needed to have the ability to fine tune the joint areas due to wood movement and use of the mechanism. I get side to side movement and up and down movement - not a lot - but enough for an audible bump especially in a height difference. I use a combination of shims and flat head wood screws to be able to make adjustments at the joint. I found permanently mounting the track to the removable section and having an overhang so the track joint and base joint do not overlap solved a bunch of issues. Duck unders got old really quick.    

@ScoutingDad posted:

Lance, if you ever figure out how to get the track clearance at the hinge end please post some photos. On my three movable bridges, I have found I needed to have the ability to fine tune the joint areas due to wood movement and use of the mechanism. I get side to side movement and up and down movement - not a lot - but enough for an audible bump especially in a height difference. I use a combination of shims and flat head wood screws to be able to make adjustments at the joint. I found permanently mounting the track to the removable section and having an overhang so the track joint and base joint do not overlap solved a bunch of issues. Duck unders got old really quick.    

 

I ended up going with a lift out. There were a few things I wanted and the lift out better suited me. I know lots of folks say the “hinge point” has to be above your rails or higher per say to make it not bind. 

I also didn’t want to have a connection I had to manually unhook so I’ve got creative with dowels and my 3D printer and have been working on a disconnect I think will work great. It’s not wired up in the photo yet but it makes the connection snug yet still can lift out with minimum effort.  Put in some micro switches on each side aswell to kill the oncoming track power in case the bridge is not in place. 

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Last but not least, here is the updated track plan as the table sits. I ended up wanting a town so I changed a few things around thus had to change the bridge design slightly.

TrackPlan5-18

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Lance, The lift out looks good.  Will you provide a place to sit it down, or just hold it until you are through and put it back in place?  I'm contemplating the liftout may be better for the me, the carpentry challenged modeler. 

Thanks Mark, I have room under the table over in that area I may build a small shelf to sit it on when not in place. 

B5B9DAA4-9CCF-40CB-8557-49BD2CDFC94009AD285F-FDDD-43F2-8E4F-DA048EC0C48E16ACCBE2-6DB6-4C01-B8EE-45DC01518977121046DC-F305-4359-AFA0-CA42A7E693D3

Tonight’s update. Waiting on some switches to show up later this week so doing what I can while waiting on them. I finally got the bridge how I like it and started on some power routing. I even had some help from my Local Hobby Shop owner for a bit today which helped out tremendously for an extra set of hands. 

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Lance, The track you have done so far looks great!  The bridge over the entryway looks good, and should be sturdy for moving back and forth.

Wow!  A hobby shop house call!!!  That's great!  Reminds me of the doctor making house calls when I was little.  Yes, I can remember that!  

C6978DBC-CB2D-4A72-A922-87017D16F0DFB6D0EE41-4D7D-4887-9BC3-33DAC31AA0528D912273-C160-451B-93EE-2B96310C8014F9899966-C96E-45E9-95CF-A0DF3DD155CFB640AFFD-DD56-45D2-BD1E-085751F5F4962406214D-96FC-48E9-82E5-92983935BA2CGot some more track down. The outside loop is finished mostly besides a siding. My switches showed up today so only ones I am missing are the yard switches. Working on the inner loop currently. My wire shows up tomorrow so I will be able to start putting in some wire drops here soon. There will be a 1/2 inch or so lip from a 1x5 or 6 eventually so don’t be too concerned about the one siding that is near the edge. 

I forget who mentioned it but the small cut off saw from Harbor Freight has worked awesome with cutting track. Really beats a dremel and I would recommend it to anyone looking at making cuts. With a coupon I think I walked out the door minus the blades for $35 for the saw. It is a bit loud but well worth it! 

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Lance, The layout is looking better and better all the time.  I should have bought one of those saws.

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